ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN
For the past 2 years I have been on an important journey with Dove to celebrate the power of diversity in real beauty with all South African women. Our hope is to tackle the unhelpful beauty stereotypes that are ever growing in today’s mainstream culture and affecting the next generation of South African women. The journey has unfolded as a series of different campaigns, namely: #RealBeauty, Project #ShowUS, the Dove Self-Esteem Project, and the No Digital Distortion Mark project.
I posted a few pics with my freckles popping (you know, as they always are ). On the one hand I received a message that strengthened my belief that being happy and proud of my freckles truly is helping another individual accept that they are uniquely different and beautiful. On the other hand, I received a question asking me what was wrong with my face and another question asking me why I would be ok with keeping my freckles when I could opt for laser treatment to get them removed.
Now, I know, you’re ready to say “Huli, just ignore the negative people, focus on the positive, etc etc”, and I completely hear you and I’m on that boat. But, in the same breath, I also hear the negative person, the person who is still trying to accept looking different AND feeling beautiful. It’s not an easy feat. And to that person I say, I didn’t always feel this way about my freckles. I too wanted to get them removed. I felt that way until one big thing happened: I started believing people when they told me my freckles were a symbol of my uniqueness. I then looked into and embraced the meaning of ‘unique’: Distinct. Individual. Special. Unrepeated. One-of-a-kind.
Those words describe me, they describe YOU. You just have to make a choice to 1. accept that and 2. believe it. And that work, that work is done on the inside. That is why #RealBeauty is really first and foremost about self-love. It is an inside job that simply manifests itself on the outside. It manifests itself as a smile, as confidence, as a light that cannot be dimmed.
So to my fellow freckled-faces, unique faces, distinct and different, one-of-a-kind faces, you are BEAUTIFUL.
Please join @dove and I in sharing your #RealBeauty story, so we can inspire a generation of women and men to love themselves and make them realise their #RealBeauty. Looking forward to reading your stories
70% of women still don’t feel represented in media & advertising. That’s why Dove is taking action with Girlgaze, Getty Images, and women everywhere to create Project #ShowUs – the world’s largest photo library created by women and non-binary individuals to shatter beauty stereotypes. With over 5000 images, we can offer a more inclusive vision of beauty to all media & advertisers. These images are:
- 100% powered by women from 39 countries, in front of and behind the camera
- Show real diversity rarely seen in media & advertising
- True-to-life depictions, not staged sets
- No digital distortion, to show the world unfiltered beauty
- Self-defined beauty with every woman deciding how she wants to be seen
Dove Self-Esteem Project
More than half of the girls around the world do not have high body confidence. When girls don’t feel confident, 7-in-10 stop themselves from eating or otherwise put their health at risk, 8-in-10 avoid seeing friends and family or trying out for for a team or a club, 7-in-10 will not be assertive in their opinion or stick to their decision. Learning about and building their self-esteem can change all of this! We can build a generation of strong, confident young people.
The Dove Self-Esteem Project has partnered with the Department of Education to roll out an evidence-based self-esteem syllabus to schools all around the country. This project has helped over 20million young people around the world already.
I’m so excited for our youth! So often we are drilled on IQ things, but no-one is teaching us or building our EQ. If there’s one subject that they’ll use for the rest of their lives it is that of self-love and self-acceptance.
Let’s also not leave these lessons and conversations to teachers alone, let’s have them with our nieces and nephews, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters. You can download free educational material that will teach you how to have self-esteem conversations with youngsters: https://www.dove.com/za/dove-self-esteem-project.html
No Digital Distortion Mark
The ‘No Digital Distortion’ mark is an initiative to further commit to real, true, and accurate imagery. It will represent that the image has not been distorted. It ensures that Dove only shows genuine portrayals of people –showing them how they are in real life.
The ambition of the mark is to help women and girls navigate the media landscape, letting them know that the image they see has not been digitally distorted to fit the ideals of what beauty is and isn’t.
The ‘No Digital Distortion’ mark is another step in ensuring beauty is a source of confidence and not anxiety.